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Walter Douglas


Walter Douglas, centre, at opening of nightclub in Koh Samui  Plants: image 4 0f 4 thumb
Walter Douglas (born 1961) is a Scottish drug trafficker and organized crime figure, dubbed the Tartan Pimpernel by the press, who is one of the richest in the United Kingdom with an estimated worth of £20 million. Wanted in at least three countries on drug trafficking and gun running charges as of 2003, Douglas had ties to numerous international criminal organizations in Europe and North America as the head of the Delta crime syndicate.

Born in Glasgow, Scotland, Douglas was a former milkman and petty thief before becoming involved in drug trafficking and money laundering with the Delta crime syndicate during the 1980s and early 1990s earning millions smuggling cannabis into the United Kingdom from Morocco, Spain and Holland. An associate of Brian Doran, he used a plants and car exporting business as a front for his activities. He was also questioned by police in the 1990 murder of Charlie Wilson, a member of the Great Train Robbery.

In early 1994, he and his three partners were arrested by Dutch authorities after their freighter, the Britannia Gezel, was boarded by British customs officers who discovered over 18 tons of hashish on board. One of the largest narcotics investigations in the history of the Netherlands, which included the Dutch IRT, the British Customs Service and the American Drug Enforcement Agency, the reported street value of the seized cannabis was estimated at £60 million.

Arrested by Dutch police at his farmhouse at Abcoude, he and his three partners tried at Utrecht High Court and accused of smuggling cannabis, ecstasy and cocaine. Douglas was also scheduled to be tried in Scotland, the Crown Office in Edinburgh filing for extradition only hours of his arrest. With testimony by agents from the Holland, Denmark, Spain and the United States, the prosecution accused Douglas and the others of earning 100 million from drug trafficking operations during the last three years. Douglas was eventually sentenced to four years imprisonment and fined 250,000 on March 29, 1994.

However, while his lawyer attempted to appeal the case claiming Dutch police used illegal phone taps to make the arrest, he fled the country while out on bail. He was listed on Interpol's most wanted list and an international warrant was issued for his arrest, however he managed to evade authorities for over 12 years.

Douglas was soon discovered by authorities living in southern Spain's Costa del Crime under the name Terence Tomkins within several years. Spanish custom officials made several failed attempts to take him into custody following a two-year international sting operation when they raided the wrong house in Fuengirola. Two years later, in May 1998, Douglas was taken into custody by police on suspicion of laundering an estimated £150 million, he was imprisoned in the notorious Alhaurin de le Torre prison in Malaga, Spain. However, he was eventually released due to legal problems extraditing Douglas to Holland for trial.

In 2003, he was placed in Russia working with the Russian Mafia. In early 2005, he fled to South Africa with £4 million after a failed drug deal with the Russian mobsters in Latvia. During this time, he hired two Latvian bodyguards believing Colombian drug cartels might also pursuing him. In July 2005, he purchased a 75 ft.-Sunseeker Predator and made his escape from the country reportedly sailing north for Spain. Worth £1.5 million, the yacht was fitted with high-tech radar and twin 1,200 hp engines keeping ahead of the Russian Mafia and Colombian drug cartels.

In September 2006, he was caught while attempting to enter Ibiza using a false passport.

Arrested by a warrant issued by a judge in Marbella, Spain, Douglas was flown to the mainland for further questioning by authorities. As he had purchased the passport in Holland, the charges against him were dropped and Douglas was eventually released. He did remain out on bail in regards to money laundering charges agreeing to report to the court on a regular basis.

In October 2013, Police Scotland, the Crown Office, Customs and Interpol said they knew of no outstanding warrants against Douglas. However, on 5th of February 2014, he was arrested  by Interpol and Thai police.




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Last modified: Friday, 17 May 2024